The Extraordinary Story How the Wildest Man in Congress and a Rogue CIA Agent Changed the History of Our Times
George Crile’s New York Times best seller, Charlie Wilson’s War, is now a major motion picture starring Oscar winners Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Philip Seymour Hoffman and directed by Oscar-winner Mike Nichols
Hailed by The Seattle Times
as “one of the most important books ever written about U.S.
government covert operations,” Charlie Wilson’s War
was a New York Times
, Washington Post
, and Los Angeles Times
best seller when it was published in 2003. A major motion picture based on the book, released in December 2007, stars Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Philip Seymour Hoffman, and is directed by Mike Nichols with a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin. To coincide with the film’s release, Grove Press has reissued George Crile’s bestselling bookthe story of a whiskey-swilling, skirt-chasing, scandal-prone congressman from Texas, and how he conspired with a rogue CIA operative to launch the biggest and most successful covert operation in U.S. history.
In the early 1980s, a Houston
socialite turned the attention of maverick Texas
congressman Charlie Wilson to the ragged band of Afghan “freedom fighters” who continued, despite overwhelming odds, to fight the Soviet invaders. The congressman became passionate about their cause. At a time when Ronald Reagan faced a total cutoff of funding for the Contra war, Wilson, who sat on the all-powerful House Appropriations Committee, managed to procure hundreds of millions of dollars to support the mujahideen. The arms were secretly obtained and distributed with the help of an out-of-favor CIA operative, Gust Avrakotos, who handpicked a staff of CIA outcasts to run his operation and, with their help, continually stretched the Agency’s rules to the breaking point.
Moving from the back rooms of the Capitol to secret chambers at Langley, from arms dealers’ conventions to the Khyber Pass, Charlie Wilson’s War
presents an astonishing chapter of our recent past, and the key to understanding what helped trigger the sudden collapse of the Soviet Union and ultimately led to the emergence of a brand-new foe in the form of radical Islam.